New Low-Downpayment Mortgage Aims to Cha

New Low-Downpayment Mortgage Aims to Change the Game for Homebuyers

Freddie Mac recently launched Home Possible Advantage(SM), an affordable conforming, conventional mortgage with a three percent downpayment requirement designed to make responsible homeownership accessible to more first-time buyers and other qualified borrowers with limited downpayment savings.

“Home Possible Advantage gives qualified borrowers with limited downpayment savings a responsible path to homeownership and lenders a new tool for reaching eligible working families ready to own a home of their own,” says Dave Lowman, Executive Vice President, Single-Family Business at Freddie Mac. “Home Possible Advantage is Freddie Mac’s newest effort to foster a strong and stable mortgage market.”

Home Possible Advantage offers qualified low- and moderate-income borrowers a conforming conventional mortgage with a maximum loan-to-value ratio of 97 percent.

Home Possible Advantage mortgages can be used to buy a single unit property or for a “no cash out” refinance of an existing mortgage.

First time homebuyers must participate in an acceptable borrower education program, like Freddie Mac’s CreditSmart®, to qualify for Home Possible Advantage.

Home Possible Advantage mortgages are available as 15-, 20-, and 30-year fixed rate mortgages.

For more information, visit http://www.freddiemac.com/singlefamily/homepossible. Lenders should contact their Freddie Mac representative and interested borrowers should contact a Freddie Mac lender.

For more information, visit http://www.freddiemac.com.
Reprinted with permission from RISMedia. ©2014. All rights reserved.

Home Protection Tips For Snowbird Travelers

With last year’s polar vortex fresh in the minds of many Americans, the flock of snowbird travelers could grow considerably this season as folks head to the sunny states. Whether families spend a couple of weeks or the majority of the winter in a different state, preparing a residence for a prolonged absence is important. Snowbird travelers must protect their homes from the forces of nature and potential burglars or trespassers.
Protect your home before you fly the coop with these tips.

1. Forward mail, stop newspapers and have a neighbor collect fliers. A house with mail and papers piling up is a sure sign the owners have flown the coop.
2. If absent during the growing season, snowbird homeowners must make sure someone is mowing the lawn. This maintains the appearance that someone is in the residence and keeps the property in compliance with local ordinances.
3. Ensure motion sensing exterior lights are working, some interior lights are on timers and alarm systems are activated.
4. Close fireplace flus to prevent birds, bats and rodents from making their way indoors.
5. Clean the kitchen and pantries before leaving. Even a small amount of garbage or loose food could be signal to bugs that the buffet is open.
6. For season-long trips, it’s a good idea to unplug and defrost freezers and refrigerators and turn off the water.

Source: Aprilaire

Reprinted with permission from RISMedia. ©2014. All rights reserved.

During Holiday Gatherings, Spend Time Assessing Aging Family Members

With fuel prices the lowest in four years, more than 40 million Americans are expected to take to the roadways, railways and airways as they head home for the holidays. Take advantage of one of the few occasions when multiple generations gather under one roof to observe signs of decline in aging loved ones.

“Adult family members visiting their parents over the holidays should be aware of the obvious,” says Mary Merrell Bailey, an estate planning attorney. Bailey suggests watching out for a combination of the following factors:

  • Is the mail piled up or unopened, or are there notices from creditors?
  • Were mom’s family recipes burned or not cooked enough?
  • Is there insufficient food in the pantry or decaying food in the refrigerator?
  • Are the pets being cared for and is the home being maintained as usual?
  • Does the car have signs of damage?
  • Are there changes in personality, hygiene, or ability to engage in dinner conversation?

According to Bailey, spotting issues early on can help ensure that seniors who are living independently will receive proper care if their condition progresses. Mismanagement of financial and legal affairs, which often occurs with diminished capacity, can be addressed through legal guardianship proceedings.

Source: Your Caring Law Firm

Reprinted with permission from RISMedia. ©2014. All rights reserved.